Mike van der Hoorn targeting 90-minute performance
Mike van der Hoorn is targeting a 90-minute performance, from both a personal and team perspective, as Swansea City gear up for another fixture that is crucial to their play-off hopes.
The Dutch defender made his first start since January during Wednesday night’s 2-2 draw with Nottingham Forest at The City Ground.
Having made his return from an ankle injury with a 30-minute run out against Sheffield Wednesday earlier this month, van der Hoorn banked more valuable game-time against Forest.
And now he hopes he can feature for the whole game when the Swans host Bristol City on Saturday.
With Steve Cooper’s side sitting three points adrift of the play-offs with two games remaining, van der Hoorn also knows the Swans can’t slip up.
“We will keep the pressure on for the remaining games. That is what we need to do,” said the 27-year-old.
“When you lead twice and still draw, you feel like victory has slipped through your hands.
“The performance against Forest was very encouraging again. We were on top for the majority of the game, and we used possession well.
“A point is not the worst return, but we went there looking for three points because it would have helped us a lot.
“On a personal level, I was buzzing when the gaffer told me I was going to start. I’ve worked so hard to be back on the pitch.
“The plan was always to play 60 minutes, so that was a big boost in my full recovery.
“The next step for me is to play 90 minutes. If I do then I know what I need to do, while as a team we must also put in a 90-minute performance.”
With keeper Freddie Woodman injured, van der Hoorn has been reunited with fellow countryman Erwin Mulder.
The shotstopper made his first appearance of the season when he came on in the dying moments of last weekend’s last-gasp defeat to Leeds due to Woodman sustaining a hip injury.
The 31-year-old then made his first start against Forest, and van der Hoorn believes Mulder’s cool character will prove helpful in the high pressure situation of the next two games.
“Erwin is laid back, so he doesn’t get nervous,” added van der Hoorn.
“He’s not a new starter – he is very experienced and played a lot of games last season.
“For him, he has a good chance to help us a lot in the next two games.”